Footwear, heel pain and YOU!

Footwear, heel pain and YOU!

“I have these really cushioned shoes” she says with pride!

“The guy in the shop says they will be the best thing they are just so comfortable”

“I bought the best ones they had”

“They worked for a while but now it has come back and it feels just as bad if not worse than it did before”

“I am so frustrated I have tried everything”

Footwear, heel pain and YOU - 1

Asics Nimbus for Neutral or higher arched foot types – great supportive cushioning

This is generally how the conversation with many of our patients who first visit us tends to sound like. Why does it sound like you? Because we see “you” …or someone just like you every day. (often 6 – 10 times a day!)

Heel pain and foot pain can be frustrating. It can stop you from doing the things you love. Putting off the plans you have. Tried walking the city to surf with heel pain or for that matter the streets of Greece on that big overseas trip you had planned? Heel pain can be a game changer!

Many people do the very first thing that comes to mind BUY NEW SHOES! From GP’s to nurses to your next door neighbor, people will tell you that new shoes are the way to go and we won’t disagree BUT BE WARNED the choice of shoes is what’s important.

Most very cushioned shoes WILL NOT help you! Our experience of successfully treating thousands of heel pain patients says, a shoe that has a firm shell with a small amount of structured cushioning is what works best.

Footwear for heel pain needs to be more supportive. We have found that cupping the foot with a firm heel counter (The very back part of the shoe). Supporting the foot through the midfoot with a shank, meaning a firm part of the sole, so the shoe doesn’t bend in the middle. When you visit us with your heel pain it’s one of the very first things as practitioners we look at.

Footwear, heel pain and YOU - 2

Our “got to shoe” of 2014 is the Asics Gel cardio zip 2

Avoid your trendy Nike footwear with large bulky cushioned air bags. Avoid footwear that are super flexible and bend in the middle. Light weight and footwear like “supasoft” and “gel cushioning”. Our experience says these at first these feel ok but quickly become more of a problem than a solution. Don’t even start us on minimalist shoes and barefoot running – a recipe for disaster.

Footwear is only part of a more detailed solution. When visiting A step ahead foot +ankle care we will develop a detailed treatment plan addressing everything from your footwear to soft tissue rehabilitation through to correcting your poor foot posture. Heel pain is a complex problem that won’t go away by itself (it will if you are happy to wait anywhere between 12 month and 5 years). Sadly unlike other conditions unless you are going to stop walking altogether you are going to have to deal with this problem before it will go away.

The podiatrists at A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle Care specialize in lower-limb mechanics and sports medicine. Their podiatrists have been featured on television and in magazines such as Men’s Health, Good Medicine, Prevention and many others. They see more than 15,000 patients every year with foot pain just like yours. The practice has been servicing Western Sydney for over 30 years.

They work closely with a number of General practitioners, Orthopaedic surgeons, Sports physicians and Sports physiotherapists to assist in the treatment of many of their difficult patients. They are also the podiatrists that other podiatrists refer to when they need someone to work with their complex patients.

You can contact A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle care on 96732987 or 47322007 to make an appointment.

Fungal toenails GONE FAST!

Fungal toenails GONE FAST!

Fungal nails will soon become a thing of the past

Fungal toenails GONE FAST! - 1

Fungal or ugly looking nails

It is estimated that over 2 Million people in Australia suffer from Fungal toenails !  (that’s 10% of the Population).  So if you think your nails have a fungus you may well be right!

Fungal nails can be unsightly and embarrassing. Often described as “rotten nails”, patients may describe their nails as varying in colour, from a yellow through to a brown discolouration. The nail may also look like it is thickened or even eaten away.

Sadly treatment to date has been limited with only expensive but often ineffective nail paints or prescription only heavy duty oral medication which while effective taken a long time to work and can have significant side effect for many people. There are a multitude of “home” remedies that are reported to work but most often lead to no success! If Vicks worked on toenails don’t you think the company behind Vicks would have cottoned onto this by now?????

Laser therapy is a new and highly effective treatment for this embarrassing and health effecting problem.

Why choose Laser

  • Highly effective – Fast result
  • Safe – No side effects!
  • No Aesthetic required
  • Comfortable with minimal discomfort
  • Nail Polish can be applied immediately after you leave
  • No need to take medication

Brenden after many years in Podiatry and feeling the frustration of literally tens of thousands of patients took the decision to look for a solution to chronic fungal toenails.  “Each year I see literally hundreds of patients who have struggled with this horrible condition” Says Brenden. “Many of these patients have tried multiple creams lotions and medicament with no relief”. Frustrated by this, Brenden along with some Podiatry friends decided to look worldwide for a solution that would be safe simple and pain free for patients.

In search of an answer Brenden attend a conference in America and after some research found the Class 4 Diode laser now being introduced to A Step ahead foot and Ankle care. Finally he had found an answer which provided patients with simple and safe solution to a complicated problem.

We are now very pleased to be taking bookings for this treatment to fight nasty nail infections!

Call us at Penrith on 47322007 or St Marys on 96732987 if you too would like to the fungal toe nails gone!

Brenden our Podiatrist “back” in the media

Brenden our Podiatrist “back” in the media

If you havent come across us before you may not realise that Brenden our principal Podiatrist has for many years been considered one of the foremost experts on feet  and Podiatry in Australia. He has for years been called upon to make comment as an expert. From the today show to the Brenden our Podiatrist Sydney morning herald to Dolly magazine!
This month BB is in HCF’s Fit &well magazine, just in case you don’t get a copy or cant see and read the text here it is below.

“Best foot forward

“High heels tilt your pelvis forward, throw your centre of gravity out of alignment and force your back muscles to work harder to maintain stability,” says Brenden Brown, spokesperson for the Australian Podiatry Council.

If you have lower back pain women should choose a shoe with a wide, flat heel of no higher than 2.5 centimetres and men should avoid wearing loafers and things.  “Lower back pain can also be treated in some people by addressing poor foot posture with orthotic supports in shoes,” Brown says.”

Why we make our own orthotics and how they are better

Why we make our own orthotics and how they are better

Q) Why did we start our own Orthotic Company in 2010?Why we make our own orthotics and how they are better - 1
A) Sometimes you just know things can be better!

I have been making orthoses for patients for a long time now nearly 20 years.  I do it because time and time again I see these seemingly simple devices (they are actually not simple) make great changes to people’s lives. Put simply I have watched as orthoses made with love, passion and a good dash of knowledge and advanced technology, make people live better!

In the past I had all my devices made by third party companies – almost all Podiatrists do. They are made from a script which we fill out giving you a series of options. For many people it works it did for me for many years. However while it worked and worked well, I knew we could do better I knew I could help people MORE and get a better fit if I could have more control right from the start till right to the finish.

Why we make our own orthotics and how they are better - 2

Our Lab technicians working on orthotics for patients each pair is hand finished. Some of our Lab technichians have been making orthotics for more than 15 years – that’s experience!

Better design – I wanted to design orthotics that patients LOVED to wear! So after extensive investigation and visiting 2 other countries, I came across what I consider to be the best orthotic design package available in the world to date.  So we invested in a state of the art system with limitless design capabilities.

Perfect fit – It has to fit our patient’s feet PERFECTLY! Not only did the package come with a brilliant design package it came with a laser scanner that took a 3D scan the accuracy and likes of which I could not find elsewhere. It maps the foot accurately to within half a millimetre – Heck I have had a piece of dirty stuck to someone’s foot and these scanners have picked it up! We bought two world leading scanners – I have not found better

More flexibility-Our patients need us to work with them! With minimal restrictions! If a patient really needs a different cover or a particular fit for a particular shoe, I want to give it to them! I wanted to not be restricted to a series of boxes ticked on a prescription. We now deliver a true Bespoke – custom made orthotic.

Best quality– Our patients deserve the best!  I want to provide all the best materials for my patients! The highest quality, too the best standards- no compromise! I wanted to be the person deciding on the quality – I am super fussy and I like expensive stuff!  We now buy only what we consider will last the longest for our patients and what will deliver them the most comfort and performance!

No excesses – Our patients are paying good money, they deserve only the best. If a cover is wrong, if it isn’t comfortable, if it wears out, if it needs to be better – it is all up to us! It’s not someone else’s fault, a faceless guy at a lab. It all comes back to us! We guarantee what we make- we make the best and stand behind it! 12 months guarantee on the shell and top cover, if it’s not right we fix it and in that time you will never pay!

We started this company to make patients the happiest they can be!

A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle care are located in Sydney’s Western Suburbs. We would love to be able to help you with your foot or ankle pain.

A side note: We are glad to see other practices around us start to develop a love for making their own orthotics. We say that’s great if we can lead the way and others pick up on our technology and as an end result we get all get better results for our patients that’s an awesome thing! We have now been doing this for a long time if we can help you in any way please let us know – Happy to help others get it right!

Why is your shockwave therapy not stopping your heel pain?

Why is your shockwave therapy not stopping your heel pain?

Heel pain can stop you in your tracks from the moment you get out of bed your heel can be unbearable. Our patients describe not being able to put their heel to the floor, hobbling to the shower or toilet only to get a slight relief but then for their pain to come back later in the day! It stops you functioning and stops you from all the activities you love!

When you have this pain you search and cling to answers. Many patients are sadly told by their GP there is nothing they can do. They may be given hard insoles or orthotics by well-meaning practitioners or lately they are prescribed Shockwave!!!

Shockwave is the latest treatment for this debilitating condition. Shockwaves cause micro trauma to the diseased tendon tissue. This results in inflammation, which allows the body to send healing cells and increase the blood flow to the injured site.

While we make the application of this technology sound very simple, in the wrong hands and if you don’t have experience applying this in practice, this therapy can at best not work, and at other times in the worst case scenario, make your condition worse. Anyone can hold a Dentist drill but would you let anyone do your filling for you?

Our team of therapist at A Step Ahead Foot + Ankle care have been using this technology for a number of years we see approximately 8 to 12 patients a day using this technology. Our staff unlike others who have adopted this therapy lately, have a great deal of experience and are continuously looking at ways which will increase the effectiveness of the therapy.

Why is your shockwave therapy not stopping your heel pain? - 1

Along with the experience our practitioners have comes the knowledge that in almost all cases shockwave therapy by itself will not fix you ………yes you heard correctly!

When patients visit us for heel pain and other muscular problems yes we do often use Shock wave, however it is only part of a treatment plan. We also give you advice on the right foot wear, stretching, possible taping and analysis your walk and run to assess if you need soft comfortable orthoses.  Shock wave may also not be right for you our Podiatrist may decide you are better suited to other soft tissue therapies we use.

So while Shock wave can be an excellent tool in the fight against chronic heel pain. Without experience and used in the wrong way, or used in isolation the success rate of this therapy drops dramatically.

At A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle care we have been successfully treating people for heel pain for at least 15 years. If you are suffering from Heel pain we would really like to help you. We are situated in Penrith and St Marys in Western Sydney.  You can contact us on 96732987 or 47322007.

6 reasons why your heel pain is not getting any better.

6 reasons why your heel pain is not getting any better.

1.    You decide to go it alone and NOT get professional advice.

Of all the people we see, a large proportion of them have never had any care or professional advice. Quotes like “I just thought it would go away” or “A friend told me what they did to get rid of the pain and I just tried that”. Most times it doesn’t!  You will increase your chance of beating heel pain, significantly by getting a professional opinion. Professional advice and treatment costs money. Yes some people find this expensive however others find it invaluable. It depends on how much you really want to get rid of your very sore heels?

2.    You wear thongs because your feet are sore

Wearing thongs, Croc type shoes or even bare feet for many people make their feet feel better initially but all our experience tells us you are doing more damage.  The pain you feel days later not necessarily at the time. You are welcome to argue this point as much as you like, while you continue to hobble …………

3.    You get advice and then choose which bits you use.

6 reasons why your heel pain is not getting any better - 1

Great work on getting advice now it’s time to take it ……yes ALL of it. When a care plan is developed for you, if you choose only the bits you like to hear and the easy bits, you will end up failing to get better. Your Podiatrist should work with you as a patient to establish the best way to relieve you of your pain.  They should speak to you about what shoes are best for you. What treatment will get you better quickest, including stretching, therapy to relax the soft tissue and possibly orthotics.  Now choosing NOT to do some of the suggested treatment universally ends up with patients not getting better. Our Podiatrists do all that and more, does yours?

4.    You bought hard rigid orthotics from a Podiatrist.

Our experience tells us that rigid hard orthoses on most occasions irritate the heel and the arch region adding to your discomfort. We have over the years collected many pairs of rigid orthotic from patients who give them to us in frustration after finding they have hindered rather than help.  Secondly if this is the only therapy you were given, with the exception of a couple of possible stretches then we would suggest to you that there is more to getting rid of your pain than this – ask the question “So how is this rehabilitating my damaged soft tissue” ?

5.    You continue to do loads of exercise

Einstein is once said to have defined Madness as “Continuing to do things exactly the same and hoping for a different result”. As practitioners we are probably sportier than others and so we truly do understand your hopes to continuing to exercise. But in truth unless you make some form of change its unlikely you will get better. There are other options available which can help you to stay fit like rowing, weight training and alike. Let’s work together to see what we can allow you to keep up your health goals. If your practitioner is telling you there is no need to change then we would suggest the first change you make is the practitioner!

6.    You choose a practitioner who does not understand heel pain.

So your GP says they will fix your heel pain? Your Physio who is treating your shoulder says the same and the Podiatrist you see, who works a day a week at your local GP clinic and cuts your toe nails, says they will fix it no problem. Who do you choose?
Your heel pain is not simple its complex and for you it’s really sore!  Choose someone who see’s and treats heel pain regularly. Choose someone who is passionate about making sure that they help you on the way to getting you better. All the people above are probably very good at what they do, but they most likely won’t end up helping you beat your pain!

How can we help

At A Step Ahead foot + Ankle care we see approximately 8 to 12 heel pain patients a day. We have patients that travel literally hundreds of kilometres to seek our help – Which is really lovely!  Our clinics are set up quite specifically to treat patients with heel pain. We have invested hundreds of thousands of dollars into equipment and the latest technology to help us, help you- beat heel pain.

Our principal Podiatrist Brenden Brown is recognised as an expert in Podiatry. A past President of the Australasian Podiatry council he is considered an expert in the area of Foot health, appearing regularly on television shows like the Today Show and Magazines like Men’s Health.

It would be a pleasure to help you beat your heel pain.

We are located in Penrith and St Marys in Sydney’s Western suburbs. You can contact us on 47322007 or 96732987 we hope you will.

A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle care

A Step Ahead Foot and Ankle care